Gabrielle Rabascal (Marion Cotillard) is in her thirties and still unmarried; an unusual circumstance for a beautiful woman in the 50s. But she's really ill. Her mother thinks she just needs a man in her life, given how her eccentric personality and unpredictable nature has been off-putting to previous suitors, and she subsequently marries a willing bachelor. Of course, the marriage is far from a happy one for either of them, and when Gabrielle is finally admitted to hospital with kidney stones, she finds herself drawn to another patient in the institution over their shared love of literature. They begin a passionate love affair, but are forced apart when her treatment ends and she is taken home by her husband.
At just 27 years old, Canadian filmmaker Xavier Dolan has an almost overwhelming set of accolades alongside his name. All six of his feature films have won major awards, including this one, which like several others tackles a dysfunctional family with style, humour and unflinching nastiness. This one also features a stellar cast at the top of their game, and a situation that's almost painfully easy to identify with.
It opens as Louis (Gaspard Ulliel) arrives at his rural family home for the first time in 12 years to tell his family that he's dying. But he finds it difficult to get the words out. His mother Martine (Nathalie Baye) is chirpy and excited, his older brother Antoine (Vincent Cassel) challenges everything everyone says, and their younger sister Suzanne (Lea Seydoux) is curious to learn more about this brother she never really knew. And then there's Antoine's eerily patient wife Catherine (Marion Cotillard), who quietly observes everything until she understands what Louis is struggling to tell everyone, long before he can say it out loud.
Yes, this is an exploration of how awkward it is to go home again, falling back into old patterns of behaviour that make it very difficult to be yourself and say what needs to be said. And also how hard it is to understand the experiences and lifestyle of people we were once very close to who have moved on. The film is based on a play by Jean-Luc Lagarce, which is apparent in its closed-in location and the series of pointed conversations. And Dolan opens this out cleverly, using visually stunning camerawork that continually isolates the characters' inner thoughts and feelings in contrast to their outer actions. In other words, it's immediately clear why Louis left these people behind.
Continue reading: It's Only The End Of The World Review
There's a terrific script at the heart of this World War II thriller, with a blast of complex romance alongside some dark Hitchcockian twists. But filmmaker Robert Zemeckis (Forrest Gump) was probably the wrong man for the directing job, as he overproduces every scene to within an inch of its life. Everything is so big and slick that the story begins to be swamped by the too-perfect costumes and scenery. Which makes it difficult for the audience to engage in what should really be a scrappy, dangerous little drama.
It all kicks off in 1942 Casablanca, where Canadian pilot Max (Brad Pitt) meets French resistance agent Marianne (Cotillard), and together they pose as a couple to infiltrate a party and assassinate a high-ranking Nazi. They also fall in love, and afterwards decide to move to London together and start a family. But a year later, as they are raising their young daughter in leafy Hampstead, Max is told by British officials (Jared Harris and Simon McBurney) that Marianne may have secretly been a German spy all along. And there's now a countdown, as a trap as been laid to prove her guilt unless Max can find evidence to the contrary.
What follows is a tense series of events that are drenched in suspicion and intrigue as Max scrambles around to find the truth while trying not to let Marianne know what he's up to. It's a clever set-up that's very nicely played by Pitt and Cotillard, both of whom bring contrasting layers of emotion and subterfuge to their roles, plus plenty of swooning romantic energy. Most intriguing is that both are able to remain likeable as things progress. So whatever the outcome, it won't change how we feel about them. The adept actors in the side roles are excellent, although they're little more than more scenery around the central couple.
Continue reading: Allied Review
It's 1942 and the world is in the middle of a war unlike any that have happened before. The Nazi Party not only have control of Germany but they've branched out into France and their grip is tightening on lands further afield. The allied forces only held relatively small areas in France and many operatives worked undercover.
Marianne Beausejour is one such operative, she's a beautiful woman who managed to infiltrate certain circles. She's deep undercover and is trusted by her enemies. Max Vatan is spy assassin who's sent to France to help the allied forces. The pair fall for one another and start a love affair. As their relationship deepens, their safety is compromised and they both must fight to protect the love they've built.
The story for Allied is written by Steven Knight (Burnt & Peaky Blinders) and is said to be based on a true story.
Fassbender looks back on his drama school days with the Shakespearean epic.
In between his high-profile roles in Slow West, Steve Jobs and the forthcoming X-Men: Apocalypse, Michael Fassbender took time out to shoot a gritty new version of Shakespeare's Macbeth with Australian filmmaker Justin Kurzel. "While on a big film you've got all the options in the world open to you," he says. "But on a small film even getting it made is a hard thing. I love how fast you have to work - that pressure of having to get it right in one take or not at all."
Marion Cotillard and Michael Fassbender have an emotional story to portray in 'Macbeth'
Fassbender's only previous experience with Shakespeare was in drama school. "Shakespeare is challenging because of the language," he says. "And Macbeth is going through quite a lot!"
Continue reading: Macbeth Teams Michael Fassbender And Marion Cotillard
Shakespeare's Scottish play returns to the big screen with earthy energy, visual style and roaring performances. Acclaimed Australian filmmaker Justin Kurzel (Snowtown) takes an artistic approach that makes terrific use of sweeping landscapes and harsh weather, which allows the cast to put their guts into their roles. Yet while the film looks absolutely amazing, the sound mix is so muddled that anyone unfamiliar with the play will find it difficult to follow.
Michael Fassbender plays Macbeth, an 11th century general who has just triumphed on the Highland battlefield but is struggling internally after he and Lady Macbeth (Marion Cotillard) lost their infant child. So when three witches tell him that he is destined to become king, his wife encourages him to make it happen sooner rather than later. In secret, Macbeth murders King Duncan (David Thewlis) and pins the blame on his son Malcolm (Jack Reynor), who flees in fear, raising suspicion. Now on the throne, King and Queen Macbeth are overwhelmed by paranoia about any hint of a threat to their power, raising distrust of loyal friends like Banquo (Paddy Considine) and Duncan's defender Macduff (Sean Harris). Meanwhile, Malcolm has raised an army in England and is coming back to claim his title.
This is one of Shakespeare's bleakest, leanest plays, and Kurzel gives it an intriguingly expansive tone by setting most of the action outdoors in the elements rather than in shadowy castle corridors. In addition to adding a gritty, muddy kick, this allows the battle sequences to take on a Lord of the Rings-scale intensity. So the effect of this violence on the characters is that much more resonant. Lady Macbeth turns inward, tormenting herself in an extended dream sequence, while Macbeth goes the other way, killing anyone who seems even remotely shifty. But of course they also understand that their ambition and guilt are causing these extreme reactions.
Continue reading: Macbeth Review
The 'Macbeth' actress made the comments in a new interview with Porter magazine, in which she claims that the term itself "creates separation".
Former Oscar winner Marion Cotillard believes that feminism is not a useful concept in Hollywood, because the term itself creates “separation” between the sexes.
The 39 year old actor, who stars as Lady Macbeth in the forthcoming Shakespeare adaptation, said in a new interview with Porter magazine: “Filmmaking is not about gender. You cannot ask a president in a festival like Cannes to have, like, five movies directed by women and five by men.” This comment was a reference to the 2012 shortlist at the prestigious festival, when all 22 nominated films were directed by men.
Continue reading: Marion Cotillard Claims Feminism Has No Place In The Film Industry
Macbeth is a Scottish Duke who is greeted by three witches following a victorious battle. They reveal to him a prophecy which speaks of him one day becoming King of Scotland, and not only that, but he shall not be killed by any of woman born. Poisoned by greed, he confides in his wife Lady Macbeth, who is equally consumed with fantasies of riches and royalty. She convinces him to kill the current King to gain power and succeeds, though not without a price. From that moment on, this noble man transforms into a tyrant bound by guilt and paranoia and willing to do anything to maintain his throne and keep his dark secret hidden. But the more he tries to find peace within himself, the more danger he is faced with.
Continue: Macbeth - Clips
After a long, hard battle, a Scottish Thane learns of a prophesy that will change his life forever. Macbeth (Michael Fassbender) is confronted by three witches, who inform him that he shall one day be king, and that no man born by a woman shall ever kill him. When another of their prophecies comes true, he confronts his wife (Marion Cotillard), who convinces him that he must murder King Duncan (David Thewlis). From there, Macbeth falls into the darkest depths of the human soul, as he betrays those he loves for power, and abandons his friends for the love of prophesies.
Continue: Macbeth - Teaser Trailer
Directed by Justin Kurzel, Macbeth is earning rave reviews at Cannes.
Macbeth stars Michael Fassbender and Marion Cotillard arrived in Cannes on Saturday, as the film premiered as the final competition entry to be screened before the festival prize is announced tomorrow. The film is now said to be one of the top contenders for the coveted Palme d'Or prize, after impressing the critics with its new take on Shakespeare’s classic work.
Michael Fassbender and Marion Cotillard at the premiere of Macbeth in Cannes.
Directed by Justin Kurzel, this Macbeth paints the Scottish warrior as suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder and dealing with a wife who’s haunted by the loss of their child. Michael Fassbender stars in the title role, while French actress Marion Cotillard stars as Lady Macbeth.
Date of birth
30th September, 1975
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